Affiliate Events

A Conversation with Achille Mbembe
Wednesday, May 5th, 2021 | 10:00–11:30am CT
Center for the Humanities

This final session of the ongoing speaker series Mapping Planetary Humanities will consist of an interview on the ways that Dr. Achille Mbembe’s work intersects with questions of planetary, decolonization and critical race studies, followed Q&A with the audience.

Dr Achille Mbembe is Research Professor in History and Politics at the Wits Institute for Social and Economic Research at the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg. A renowned public intellectual and prolific writer, Dr Mbembe has written extensively on postcolonial theory and African history and politics. His most recent work theorizes the genealogy of the contemporary world through the lens of necropolitics and explores planetary habitability as inseparable from the politics of care, repair and restitution.

To help facilitate our discussion on planetary and decolonization, we invite you to review “Thoughts on the planetary: An interview with Achille Mbembe,” published on September 5th, 2019, with New Frame, as well as Chapter 1, “Planetary Entanglements,” from Out of the Dark Night: Essays on Decolonization, and the Introduction and Epilogue (“The Becoming Black of the World”and “There is Only One World,”respectively) from
Critique of Black ReasonPlease email if you ned help accessing these sources.

Alien Earth: Introduction to Planetary Humanities is hosted by the Center for the Humanities at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Our workshop aims to draw together an interdisciplinary consortium of scholars from across humanities and sciences to explore the intersections of astronomy, colonialism and critical race studies, climate change and environmental justice.





5:00 PM

The Elusiveness of Performance Art

Dan Van Note (Interdisciplinary Theatre Studies)

5:20 PM

“Outside of the playing space”: What to Send Up When It Goes Down as Endurance Ritual

Lily Shell (Interdisciplinary Theatre Studies)

5:40 PM

Las Yeguas de Apocalipsis: Birds, Blood, and Plastic in works by Pedro Lemebel and Francisco Casas Salva

Anna Gebarski (Interdisciplinary Theatre Studies)

6:00 PM

Auqa Chileno: Reenacting a National Traumatic Memory

Andrea Guzmán Giura (Latin American Caribbean, and Iberian Studies)

6:20 PM

Dissensus practice: the case of Qanmicha violador qanmi kanki

Pedro de Jesus Gonzalez Duran (Spanish & Portuguese)



6:45 – 7:30 PM

Panel Discussion with All Presenters

Moderated by Laurie Beth Clark & Michael Peterson

Professors, Art Department, University of Wisconsin

Register at this link;

Abstracts and bios at this link:

For more information contact: or

The department of Art History is delighted to announce the recipient of our first annual Transforming the Discipline Graduate Research Award. This new award is granted each year to a graduate student, whose research makes a significant contribution toward transforming the discipline of art and architectural history in terms of its structural inequities. Please join us in celebrating this year’s recipient, Jessica Cooley, who will be presenting her research in a talk called “Crip Materiality and the Care of Eva Hesse” on March 5, 1:30-2:30.

Including keynote speakers:
Cord Whitaker, Elizabeth Lapina, and David J. Rothenberg

Link to the conference program

“Design Bones: Decoding the Correlates of Design Thinking”

A Lecture by Mark Schar

Thursday, March 4, 2021
4:00 PM CST


Design Thinking is all the rage … and everyone wants to be one.  But what exactly is “design thinking” and what makes it different from other forms of “thinking”? Studying people/designers that are associated with design thinking reveals some of the core pillars of design thinking behavior, who might inherently have those behaviors and who are likely to develop those behaviors in the course of their academic and working lives.  This raises important issues for the teaching of design thinking and how it might be tracked in student progress.


Mark is a Senior Teaching and Research Fellow at the Design School within the School of Engineering at Stanford University. He has a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford, an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management from Northwestern University, and a BSS also from Northwestern University. Mark had a 25-year career at The Procter & Gamble, retiring as a Senior Vice President General Manager, followed by a 5-year stint at Intuit as Chief Marketing Officer and Senior Vice President of Tax Services. He teaches classes on Solid Mechanics, Design Process, Team Management, Product Management, and Leadership with research interests on innovative behaviors and the development of a scale to measure engineering, innovation, and design thinking self-efficacy.

website and registration:

College Art Association Annual Conference

February 10-13, 2021

The College Art Association of America (CAA) is the principal organization in the United States for professionals in the visual arts, from students to art historians to emeritus faculty. Founded in 1911, it “promotes these arts and their understanding through advocacy, intellectual engagement, and a commitment to the diversity of practices and practitioners.” CAA currently has individual members across the United States and internationally; and institutional members, such as libraries, academic departments, and museums located in the United States. The organization’s programs, standards and guidelines, advocacy, intellectual engagement, and commitment to the diversity of practices and practitioners, align with its broad and diverse membership.

CAA holds its Annual Conference in February every year. The conference moves to different cities each year, returning to New York every other year. Cities that have hosted the CAA Annual Conference include, Houston, Seattle, Boston, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, Chicago, and other major American cities. Between four and six thousand members attend each year, depending on the location. The convention is the largest and most important of the year for makers and interpreters of visual art and visual culture. The conference typically includes more than 300 panels and sessions examining a wide array of topics and issues in the art world. This year, the conference is being held virtually.

Visit the CAA website for more information.

CDMC Conversation & Workshop:
Meredith A Bak

“Playful Visions:
Children’s Media Culture before Screen Time”


Friday, March 12, 2021
2:00 PM CST online

Dr. Meredith A. Bak researches historical and contemporary children’s media, toys, and popular conceptions about technology and play. Bak will be leading a workshop about 19th-century optical toys and illusions—kids’ media before screen time. She will also be in conversation with SoHE’s Heather Kirkorian, Faculty Director of the Child Development Lab, to discuss how early optical toys set the stage for the aspirations and anxieties we associate with children’s media today.

Dr. Meredith A. Bak is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Childhood Studies at Rutgers University-Camden. She researches historical and contemporary children’s media, toys, and popular conceptions about technology and play. Bak will be leading a workshop about nineteenth-century optical toys and illusions—kids’ media before screen time. She will also be in conversation with SoHE Associate Professor Heather Kirkorian, Laura M. Secord Chair in Early Childhood Development, Faculty Director of the Child Development Lab, and Director of the Cognitive Development and Media Lab, to discuss how early optical toys set the stage for the aspirations and anxieties we associate with children’s media today.

Event is free and open to the public thanks to the support of The Anonymous Fund, but advanced registration is required in order to prepare for the workshop component of the event.

website and registration:

Textiles from Home:
Local Crafts, Global Conversations

Week-long Event/Conference of the Design Studies Dept. and the CDMC, SoHE, UW-Madison14-20 March 2021

Join us for a week-long (virtual!) celebration and exploration of the connections between textile making, domestic space, and local environments, both historically and today. Events will be scheduled throughout the week of 14-20 March 2021 and we will do our best to accommodate multiple time zones. Though we recognize that not all timings will be ideal for all people, we will aim for a critical mass at all events, as well as building community throughout the week!


Spotlight Cinema

Madison Museum of Contemporary Art

MMoCA’s Spotlight Cinema series returns this winter with an extended film series in 2021.  With online screenings of critically acclaimed and award-winning films from around the world, these will be available for viewing beginning in February.

Spotlight Cinema screenings are free for MMoCA members, and prices vary for nonmembers. Become an MMoCA member today for free access to the entire Spotlight Cinema lineup, and enjoy many other great benefits throughout the year!

Spotlight Cinema is curated by Mike King, and is a program of MMoCA’s education department. Funding for the series has been provided by maiahaus, Venture Investors, LLC, and an anonymous donor.

Films will be available starting at 7 p.m. the night of the screening, and will be available to view for a week. Please check back here soon for a link to purchase tickets.

Keep an eye on MMoCA’s website and social media channels for details on the complete Spotlight Cinema lineup.

Inclusion and Place:
Planning and Design for the 21st Century American City

Edna Ledesma,
Assistant Professor, Planning and Landscape Architecture Department, UW-Madison

Saturday, February 6, 2021
10:00 – 11:00 AM CST
Meeting URL will be sent after registration

Professor Ledesma’s presentation explores how inclusion in the planning process can build a more pluralistic 21st century city. Drawing from her research, she discusses a collaborative project between academic institutions and local stakeholders that explored the potential restoration of an eight-mile abandoned rail corridor into a new city place designed to address health, mobility, and economic development.

$10 for public, Free for Friends of the Garden

Website (more information and registration)